Microsoft has made its Office Genuine Advantage check a mandatory feature in its Office 2007 beta for users seeking to download premium features for the productivity suite.
Users must now pass the anti-piracy check to download templates, and the test will be mandatory to access the Office update service from January.
The service was first introduced as an optional feature in April, allowing users to validate the authenticity of their software.
Office 2007 is the next version of Microsoft's productivity suite, and is slated for release in January next year.
Office Genuine Advantage is based on the same technology as Windows Genuine Advantage which is currently used for Windows XP. The software denies access to non-security updates for unlicensed copies of the application.
However, programmers have repeatedly cracked the Windows Genuine Advantage technology.
Users who fail to register their software will be put in a reduced functionality mode, providing access to an internet browser only.
If the user tampers with the technology, Vista is designed to disable several more advanced features including the Aero user interface.
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